Urban Sketchers has been hosting a show on Instagram Live for the past few months, and it is a delightful treat! Rob Sketcherman hosts, interviewing a couple of sketchers each week on inspiring topics such as urban sketchers from other eras, sketching to learn, and sketching for a cause. Each week the sketchers each give viewers a challenge. My sketch above is in response to Gabi Campanario's challenge, Tell Me More. Gabi asked us to share sketches with informative captions written in our own voice. This is the first of the challenges that I've done; I'm terrible with prompts for some reason.
I started this sketch on a break from working in the yard. I began to label the trees and shrubs as a reaction to my frustration with my neighbor's bamboo and privet. As I was drawing the utility wires, I thought about how some places don't have utility wires above ground, so they don't have trees trimmed into odd shapes by their utility company. I switched my focus, and added a second sketch of the view behind the houses on my street looking east, where there is a valley created between the trees to accommodate the above-ground wires. And I wrote about it.
The other thing I love about USk Talks is getting to help out with some of the post-show work. I've been writing summaries of the shows for the Urban Sketchers website since the April 19th show. You can see the summaries here. It's a pretty simple task compared to the huge amount of work that goes on behind the scenes to produce each show. The team putting this together is a fantastic, creative, hard-working group, and I just swoop in when it's done and write a summary.
I'm very proud of the writing I've done for this project. I've noticed my writing getting stronger since I started. Even though my job is writing, it is technical writing - I'm taking existing written information and reworking it in a clear and concise way to help users do their jobs. But for USk Talks, I'm taking notes during the show and putting together highlights based on the show's theme, both interviews, and the challenges. It's a stretch for me, but a good one.
This week's show, Episode 13: Watercolorful, airs on Urban Sketcher's Instagram Live on Sunday, June 28, 4:00 AM GMT (that's 11:00 PM Saturday here in the US Central time zone, CDT). If you follow Urban Sketchers (@urbansketchers), just go to Instagram at the show time and you will see they are live in Instagram stories. The show is also available on Instagram for 24 hours after it airs, and then you can find it on YouTube.
They don't stop, so I might as well sketch them!
This meeting was different, though. It was at the end of a virtual conference for the Society for Technical Communicators - this was the "after party." And it had such a great vibe for a Zoom! There was a lot of (guided) interaction, and there were two musicians who played. For a Zoom meeting, it was quite lovely.
Last week I had to attend a four-hour training session, so I tried mapcrunch.com for the first time. Map Crunch takes you to a different Google street view every time you open it, and you can go to new random locations, too. When I opened it I saw this image from Guatemala and sketched it while listening to the training. It really kept my mind focused! And I had fun using random pens, markers, and highlighters to create a colorful scene.
I've been going out more! But not really. I'm still only going out to pick up groceries, to find toilet paper, and for the occasional restaurant food pickup. I try to sketch while I'm out, but it just depends on how much time I have.
I'm guaranteed more time at grocery pick-ups, like the one above. I'm also still just keeping a pen and my small Stillman & Birn sketchbook in my purse.
I've headed to Huey's a few times, too. While they were still only doing "curbside pickup" they had a great system going, but I usually found myself with a few minutes to sketch.
On this day (above) I had enough time to draw all of the stripes in the Clark Tower, and start on the other building.
This one is also from the Huey's parking lot, so I got a different angle on the Clark Tower.
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